When I started Retro Fridays , I knew at one point I would have to do an Ellen Emerson White book. I realize I've gone on about my love for her novels at length on the blog. This is not breaking news. But that's sort of the point. I also realized I've only actually reviewed her most recent book-- Long May She Reign --the fourth in her President's Daughter series . And that's a wonderful book, and it is an excellent series, but to really get to the root of my EEW love we're gonna need to go back to the beginning. I must have been fourteen. I saw Life Without Friends sitting faced out on the bookstore shelf and thank goodness for whichever prescient bookseller it was that faced it out because it was the cover that sold me. I would never have picked it up if all I'd seen was the spine. The title is, as my husband would (and has!) said, possibly the most depressing book title of all time. But the cover. I love it. Because the girl doesn't look depressed.